Army bullet kills 12-year-old girl

Baglung, June 24:

A girl was killed when a rifle held by an army man went off “accidentally” at Myagdi today.

Kamala Pulami, 12, a resident of Rukum, living at Arthuge, was injured when the self-loading rifle (SLR) carried by soldier Bhim Bahadur Thapa at the sentry post of Braja Dal Company of the Army at Beni Arthuge of Myagdi went off.

The girl was the daughter of havaldar Atibal Pulami stationed in the Braja Dal Company.

The girl was being taken to the capital in a helicopter when she died, the Pokhara-based western region divisional headquarters of Nepal Army said.

“The bullet hit the girl on her neck and she has been rushed to the capital by helicopter for treatment,” acting CDO Ram Bahadur Nepali said earlier. An eyewitness Chandishwor Subedi said: “The girl was shot while she had gone to fetch water from a tap near the army barracks.”

Irate locals shouted slogans demanding action against the soldier and shifting the barracks from Arthuge.

A joint meeting of the local administration, security bodies and eight political parties later decided to urge the authority concerned in writing to shift the army barracks, Subedi said.

The regional divisional headquarters said that the “accident” occurred as the SLR held by the soldier “misfired” all of a sudden. “The soldier has been taken into custody and investigation is on,” the divisional headquarters said in a statement. It also said compensation would be provided to the victim’s family.